Goya's Last Works First Exhibition in North America to Focus on Final Period of Goya's Working Life: February 22, 2006, through May 14, 2006
Goya’s luminous 1824 portrait of a woman known as María Martínez de Puga has always held a special place in the artist’s oeuvre as one of his most direct and candid works, radical in its simplicity. Acquired by Henry Clay Frick in 1914, the painting is the inspiration for the upcoming special exhibition, Goya’s Last Works, the first in the United States to concentrate exclusively on the final phase of the artist’s long career, primarily on the period of his voluntary exile in Bordeaux from 1824 to 1828. The exhibition will present over fifty objects including paintings,miniatures on ivory, lithographs, and drawings borrowed from public and private European and American collections. These works reveal the vitality and irrepressible creativity of an artist who, at age seventy-eight, in frail health and long deaf, pulled up roots in Madrid, his home for the preceding half century, and started over in France. His final works have little in common with those of his contemporaries in France and in Spain and had almost no impact on the generations that immediately followed; in fact, they remained little known until the early twentieth century. It is only in retrospect that we can appreciate the extent to which a painting such as the Frick’s María Martínez de Puga seems to anticipate the stark modernist style of Manet. The Frick is the exclusive venue for Goya’s Last Works, organized by Jonathan Brown, Carroll and Milton Petrie Professor of the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, and Susan Grace Galassi, Curator of The Frick Collection. On public view from February 22 through May 14, 2006 in the Special Exhibition Galleries and Cabinet, it will be accompanied by a fully illustrated, scholarly catalogue and public programs.